What an American Christian Learned about Anti-Semitism from Growing Up in Dubai

March 6 2019

Responding to Congresswoman Ilhan Omar’s latest anti-Semitic insinuations, Erick Erickson recalls his childhood experience in the emirate of Dubai, at the time “the freest of any part of the Middle East for Westerners.”

I went to the Jumeriah American School. . . . I had fantastic teachers and a wonderful education. But that education went only so far. Our geography textbooks were missing a country. Open to the world map, and there’d be black sharpie marker covering over the word “Israel,” which was sometimes hidden under the word “Palestine” glued into the book. The Israeli flag was redacted by censors. Encyclopedias, almanacs, history books, etc. had passages about Israel taken out. Sometimes the pages were redacted. Sometimes the pages were just torn out. . . .

I went to school with kids from China, Sweden, Canada, Sri Lanka, Lebanon, and elsewhere, but there were no Jewish kids in school. I learned about the Holocaust in high school back in the United States. That was not a topic we studied in Dubai. . . . There are a lot of Americans who do not think anti-Semitism is a big problem. They have not lived in a part of the world that blots Israel off the map. . . .

Many of us stand with Israel because Israel is a democracy among autocracies and a positive influence surrounded by a breeding ground of terrorists. Many of us stand with Israel because we understand both history and those who would bastardize it yet again to persecute Jews. All of us should be troubled by members of Congress cheering on anti-Semitism and others excusing it. We should all be troubled by white nationalists echoing them. This country has a growing problem with anti-Semitism and we need to confront it and denounce it.

History shows time and time again that the enemies of the Jewish people ultimately wind up being enemies of freedom.

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Read more at The Resurgent

More about: Anti-Semitism, Arab anti-Semitism, Dubai, Ilhan Omar, Israel & Zionism

Despite What the UN Says, the Violence at the Gaza Border Is Military, Not Civilian, in Nature

March 22 2019

On Monday, a UN Human Rights Council commission of inquiry issued its final report on last spring’s disturbances at the Gaza border. Geoffrey Corn and Peter Margulies explain why the report is fatally flawed:

The commission framed the events [in Gaza] as a series of demonstrations that were “civilian in nature.” Israel and its Supreme Court, [which has investigated some of the killings that occurred], framed the same events quite differently: as a new evolution in Israel’s ongoing armed conflict with the terrorist organization Hamas. Consistency and common sense suggest that the Israeli High Court of Justice’s framing is a more rational explanation of what occurred at the Israel-Gaza border in spring 2018.

Kites, [for instance], played a telltale role [in the violence]. When most people think of kites, they think of a child’s plaything or a hobbyist’s harmless passion. In the Gaza confrontation, kites [became] a new and effective, albeit low-tech, tactic for attacking Israel. As the report conceded, senior Gaza leaders, including from Hamas, “encouraged” the unleashing of waves of incendiary kites that during and since the spring 2018 confrontations have burned thousands of acres of arable land within Israel. The resulting destruction included fires that damaged the Kerem Shalom border crossing, which conveys goods and gasoline from Israel to Gaza. . . .

Moreover, the incendiary-kite offensive was an effective diversion from the efforts encouraged and coordinated by Hamas last spring to pierce the border with Israel and attack both IDF personnel and the civilian residents of the beleaguered Israeli towns a short distance from the border fence. . . .

The commission also failed to acknowledge that Hamas sought to use civilians as an operational cover to move members of its armed wing into position along the fence. For IDF commanders, this increased the importance of preventing a breach [in the fence]. Large crowds directly along the fence would simplify breakthrough attempts by intermingled Hamas and other belligerent operatives. The crowds themselves also could attempt to pour through any breach. Unfortunately, the commission seems to have completely omitted any credible assessment of the potential casualties on all sides that would have resulted from IDF action to seal a breach once it was achieved. . . .

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More about: Gaza Strip, Hamas, Israel & Zionism, Israeli Security, Laws of war, UNHRC, United Nations